came across this short story in the Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy of 2016 collection; was digging for a filler review today since I’m not quite done with a philosophical book from 1905 – it’s a bit of a grind with all the flowery language. And Interesting Facts was a thankful discovery – the first story of this collection really didn’t do it for me and the second one was too clever by half – gave it up after a page or so. This was a weird tale – not science fiction by any stretch, and only kinda fantasy. But you don’t know until you’re into it, and I got into it.
The story deals with a wife and mother, a woman drifting through her gloomy San Francisco days in a dissatisfactory fashion. After all, she’s a failed writer and her husband won the Pulitzer for literature. And she’s suffered through chemo and a double-mastectomy (which is why she categorizes the breasts of all the women she sees as she goes through her dragging life). She and her husband have a discussion about how soon he’d hook up if she died – she’s thinking the standard two years, but he states only as long as it takes the death certificate to go through (and he knows someone in City Hall, so that would help). Don’t ask if you don’t want to know, right? So sex is no-existent and her kids hardly talk to her and her husband openly flirts. Can life get any worse?
No, but something else can. And if you think you know what it is, pick up a copy of this collection and verify for yourself. Anyway, Interesting Facts was a good read, a lunchtime knockout that I rather enjoyed. Maybe you can find this book in the used book store. Good luck!
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